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Christopher Mintz-Plasse Rocks Out: 'Superbad' Star's Band, the Young Rapscallions, Premieres 'Middae' Track
- Posted on Dec 7th 2011 4:05PM by Nicole Pajer
Morgan Demeter Photography
Since forming in 2007, the Young Rapscallions have been catching the attention of music fans across the United States and internationally. According to Mintz-Plasse, the foursome considers itself a garage-rock band, due to their unadulterated rock sound and the fact that rehearsals take place in Mintz-Plasse's parents' garage.
In an exclusive interview with Spinner, Mintz-Plasse says he'd love to make a living touring the world and performing with the Young Rapscallions. He also discusses buying his first drum set after receiving his paycheck from 'Superbad' and explains how a sex show led to the title of the band's debut album.
You started out by jamming with your buddies, but what made you decide to take it a step further and form an actual band?
I don't know if there was ever a moment where we actually made a decision to take it step further. We started jamming and then started to write songs shortly after that. Granted, they weren't good songs, but we wanted to write originals.
Listen to the Young Rapscallions' 'Middae'
What made you decide to start playing the drums? Was it something that you had always wanted to do?
I have always loved music, but after I got my first paycheck for 'Superbad,' I wanted to treat myself to something nice. I always played Nick's drum set in his house, so I figured why not start and learn on my own?
Was it hard for you to pick up, or did it come naturally?
It was extremely hard! I would just take my iPod and play to music in my garage. I remember 'Hand of Doom' by Black Sabbath being one of the first drum beats I really wanted to learn.
How would you describe the music that you guys make?
That's a tough one. I always say we are a garage-rock band, since we play rock music out of a garage, but have been told that's not exactly true. I have heard from people it could resemble a bit of '70s stoner rock with more melodic vocals. This is the hardest question for me. I can tell you a few bands that really inspire us, and if you dig, please listen! Pearl Jam, Led Zeppelin, Pinback, John Frusciante, Incubus, My Morning Jacket, Kyuss, the Melvins ... just to name a few.
How often do you guys practice? Is it hard to find time with everyone's busy schedules?
Right now, we practice about three times a week. When we have shows coming up, about four, hopefully five. Not too hard. The only times we have to move them are for me really. If I have meetings, ADR or anything film-related, we move it around.
And you always practice in your parents' garage? When did you guys first take it over from them?
My parent's garage is the place! They never really had it. It was just filled with a lot of garbage and things they didn't use anymore. I feel like we did them a favor! We cleaned it up and made it something useful.
Do they park their cars on the street, then?
They park in the driveway. I didn't kick my parents to the curb quite yet.
Is it true that the debut album, 'Everything Vibrates,' was named after your friend description of a sex show?
[Laughs] Oh man, he was just telling me he was up late one night watching some weird sex show, where they had a bunch of toys. He told me that everything in that show vibrated, and I thought the name 'Everything Vibrates' sounded cool. So lame.
What is the best and worst part about being in a band with your good friends?
Best part is how honest you can be with everyone. The worst part is how honest you can be with everyone.
Tell us about your song writing process. Do you all contribute equally?
We have written all our songs in many different ways. Some took 15 minutes; others took three weeks to write. Mainly Nick will come in with an idea he wrote, and we will work around that idea for a while. Jamming mostly. Also Taylor will bring in bass riffs, which always turn out to be our heavier songs.
You've said that your song titles have absolutely nothing to do with the lyrics. Can you give us an example of one of those?
My favorite so far is our new song titled 'MuMuMuyYou.' We named it that because the first notes Nick plays on guitar sounds exactly like "mu-mu-muy-you." So silly and stupid, and I can promise Jon's lyrics have nothing to do with guitar notes.
Your music has progressed a lot since your debut album. What kind of songs can we expect on the forthcoming EP?
We all are very excited to release this EP, I can tell you. Our first album has some songs we still love and play live, but the producer we worked on that didn't know exactly what he was doing. Not bad mouthing him by any means, but it was his first attempt making a full record, so it was far from perfect. This EP, we got together with Keith Armstrong, who has been working under the wing of Chris Lord Alge for a very long time. He had the idea of making this EP conceptual and combining all the songs to flow into one another. Very Floyd-y of us. Honestly, it is something I am extremely proud of and think people are going to love it. All the songs have very different feels, opening with a grungy, heavy, fast-moving song, closing the CD with one of the more beautiful songs we have written.
When will this be released?
I believe right now, we are hoping to release it in January.
Nick named the band after a nickname that he gave to his dog. Were there other suggested band names that didn't make the cut?
If I can remember correctly, that was always the band name. We never really have a meeting discussing other options. It just stuck from the beginning. Nick and I had a White Stripes cover band prior to the Young Raps, and tried to write a few tunes as well. We were called the Rude Mackenzies. Always thought that was cool.
What can people expect from a Young Rapscallions live show?
I just concentrate on not messing up and having a good time with my friends onstage. But I can tell you we all have a lot of fun energy on stage -- jumping around, dancing, giving good vibes. So I guess people can expect a lot of energy and good live, extended jams.
Where does the band rank in terms of your current priorities?
It really fits in with everything. Right now, it is not my job. It is not paying the bills. So when movie business comes along, that takes first step, so I can raise money to support my family. Not really, but that will be first for now. But my band is a close second. I truly believe in our music, and I think people out there can learn to enjoy it as well.
Where do you hope to see the band going in the future?
I would love it if we could make a living off playing music and just touring the world, playing shows everywhere.
Young Rapscallions' Upcoming Shows:
Jan. 5: Glendale, Ariz., at Donna Jean Libations w/ Raina-Fire
Jan. 6: Scottsdale, Ariz., at Chasers Nightclub w/ Raina-Fire
Jan. 7: San Diego, at The Stage
Jan. 9: Santa Barbara, at The Sandbar
Jan. 10: San Luis Obispo, at The SLO Brew w/ Barefeet
Jan. 12: San Francisco, at Thee Parkside w/ Them Guns
Jan. 13: Santa Cruz, at The Blue Lagoon w/ Them Guns
Jan. 19: Las Vegas, TBD
Jan. 20: Las Vegas, at The Cheyenne Saloon
Jan. 28: West Hollywood, at The Roxy w/ The Shakers (Hometown EP Release)
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